Lena Phalen is a sculptor and painter with an intuitive, playful and tactile approach to her work. She works with mixed media and collage, creating abstract sculptures and expressive paintings, which are often in a dialogue with each other. As a sculptor Lena favours materials that respond directly to touch, such as Papier Mâché, fabric, plaster and clay. Lena often paints with her fingers and shapes materials by hand. While she is working, she lets the process of creating lead the way, allowing new ideas to develop. The process of making art, and the role of intuition and the subconscious in creativity, are central to her practice. Her way of working results in multiple, small-scale (hand-sized) pieces. When a body of work is brought together, a narrative often surfaces.
Lena is based in Glasgow, Scotland. She is originally from Sweden and has lived in Scotland for the past twelve years. She completed both her BA in Fine Art (2016), and MFA in Art and Humanities (2018), at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, in Dundee. Her work was selected to be part of the New Contemporaries Exhibition at the Royal Scottish Academy in Edinburgh, 2017. Lena’s intuitive practice is characterised by a dialogue between sculpture and painting, and between the conscious and the subconscious. Hers is an ongoing process; the resulting artworks are traces of a journey with an open-ended destination. Leaving imperfections and accidents unchanged, the work reveals the marks from the process of its own making. Lena aspires to make art which is free and uninhibited. While Joan Miro and Paul Klee are two of the established artists who have informed her practice, the so-called Outsider, or Tribal, art does have an even greater influence on her work.